A publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Tru-Tone Finishing Inc. plans new $4.6 million 70,000 sq. ft. e-coating, powder coating facility in Lexington

Tru-Tone Finishing Inc., a family owned provider of industrial e-coating, plans to create 120 jobs as it establishes a new $4.6 million facility in Lexington.

Tru-Tone offers e-coating, powder coating and some finishing processes for a variety of industrial clients. The company will initially implement an e-coat metal finishing process to serve the surrounding region at an existing 70,000-square-foot building on Baker Court. Tru-Tone representatives expect that line to open this summer, with powder coating capabilities added in 2019. Ultimately the Lexington plant will operate three 35-employee shifts.

“We have been targeting locations that will allow us to serve our existing customers, as well as expand our business in the Southeast, and Kentucky lets us to do that,” said Tru-Tone President Greg Klemenswicz, the second generation of family ownership. “The Lexington facility also made it possible to reach parts of the Midwest and East. We are very excited to be growing and building on our relationships with companies in the region and to become a part of the city and state business communities.”

E-coating, or electrophoretic painting, covers metal items with a paint emulsion by submerging the item and applying an electrical current. Electricity causes paint to adhere to any part of the item the liquid contacts. The wet emersion process makes it ideal for coating products with hard to reach surfaces. Powder coating also uses an electrical charge, but involves dry paint applied with a spray gun. As with e-coating, a final curing process produces the desired finish.

E-coating is widely used in the auto industry for corrosion resistance, but also gained popularity in construction, telecom and agricultural equipment. Klemenswicz said a large part of Tru-Tone’s business will initially come from automotive suppliers, but will eventually include a mix of general industrial clients. The facility will also offer some limited support activities, including part washing and finishing.

Greg Klemenswicz’s parents, Dennis and Elizabeth Klemenswicz, founded Tru-Tone in 1986 in Addison, Ill., a Chicago suburb. Employment grew from 15 to 60 in just a few years. That growth led to a doubling of the facility’s size to 80,000 square feet.

“Tru-Tone’s exciting announcement is further evidence that our automotive and industrial sectors continue to attract strong, thriving companies to Kentucky,” Gov. Matt Bevin said. “Our logistical advantages, strong workforce and increasingly business-friendly climate, have made the commonwealth a popular destination. Tru-Tone’s story of sound family stewardship and intelligent, steady growth is an example worth honoring and emulating. We are grateful for their decision to invest their human and financial capital in Kentucky.”

The company opened a Brownsville, Texas e-coating facility in 2012 to serve burgeoning automotive business on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border. That three-shift operation employs 80 people and the Addison plant currently employs about 120. Greg Klemenswicz and his sister Lori Ard acquired the company in 2015.

For more information on Tru-Tone, visit www.tru-tonefinishing.com.

From Governor’s Office

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